While Sioux Falls dodged most of the weekend snow and ice, the city did see rain. Now, rivers and creeks are flowing at levels we haven't seen since last June.
Seeing geese is a sign that spring is just around the corner and so is disappearing ice from the Big Sioux River. But it's not all gone.
With frost still in the ground and a weekend downpour, a team of scientists brave the icy water to learn more about how that affects river flow.
"Basically there's a correlation between the stage of the river with the velocities and right now, there's ice in the river which is backing up and slowing down the velocity. We're trying to define that condition," USGS Hydraulic Technician Brady Johnson said.
Even though the water isn't frozen it is stilly plenty cold. It is just a degree or maybe two above the freezing point.
"It's a little chilly but it's not too bad if you dress for it," Johnson said.
Johnson might seem at risk in the cold water, but he says as long as the flow isn't too strong, entering the water is safer than taking reading from a bridge with traffic. A total of three technicians are working in the area on Monday. They're learning what the remaining ice is doing to the current.
The research won't help predict potential flooding because there is still a lot of melting to do upstream.
"We'll see what happens in the future here," Johnson said.
But for now, Johnson found the Big Sioux is flowing at 100 cubic feet per second in this area of the river.
Johnson adds that you might expect to see more technicians taking river level readings in the area through the next couple months.
Hydrologists add that while the rainfall was nice, most of it will be wasted as runoff. The Big Sioux has already dropped nearly two feet from its highest point over the weekend.